Hunting (General), Waterfowl Hunting

The North Dakota Grand Slam

As in Baseball, The ND Grand Slam is A Most Exciting and Rare Event!

Aside from a by the nose play at the plate to win a game or a Kirby Puckett, wall climbing, World Series saving, Home Run robbing catch there is probably not a more exciting play in baseball than the Grand Slam.

As I sit here on the 25th anniversary of the day that Black Jack Morris willed the Twins to the 1991 world series, my mind automatically drifts to that magical fall, Herby and Kirby were in the twilights of their careers and though Black Jack had lost some velocity, his mastery of the pitching profession was wondrous.

As I think of October Baseball and that Magical Twins team it doesn’t take long for me to drift to Waterfowl hunting and another kind of Grand Slam.  We call it the North Dakota Grand Slam here in the Duck Factory and it is every bit as exciting of a thing to be a part of as the baseball version.

What Is It?

Four! Four varieties of fowl in one day, in one field, in one hunt.  Doesn’t sound so hard: Mallard, Wigeon, Gadwall, Pintail, Right?



I am talking Canada Goose, Snow Goose, Crane, and Duck!

We shoot a lot of each.  We shoot tons of Canadas and Ducks, a few less Snows, and only a smattering of Cranes early in the season. The rarity of the ND Grand Slam owes itself to the fact that though we have Canadas and Ducks here throughout the year, the Cranes come early and the Snows come late.  Getting all four coming to the same field, at the same time, into shotgun range can be difficult.

It is something we never plan on pursuing, it just happens, sometimes things just come together.  For myself, I have only achieved this Waterfowling Wonder twice.  Two times in over 35 years of Pursuing Waterfowl in the Duck Factory.

I remember both hunts vividly, and neither started out looking like memorable days.

The first was October 15th, 2010 and the second was just last year almost exactly a year ago, October 25th, 2015.

Both days started out looking like ‘too nice for hunting, should have been fishing’ days.  They would end up being two for the ages.

The 2010 hunt was due to an abundance of fowl in the area.


R.I.P. Gus, but he got in this picture, even if he wouldn’t face the camera!




The 2015 hunt was a double whammy (for the birds anyway) factor of an abundance of beans on the ground and pea soup fog.


Having my masked nephew enjoy the experience with us was classic!


After the fog cleared there was nothing left to do but preserve the memory!


The icing on our 2015 Grand Slam hunt was this little piece of metal!

Grand Slam hunts are a joy to experience.  A lot of things have to go just right and abnormal conditions that will keep some Cranes around into the Snow and Blue migration have to occur.  We will constantly be on the look out for the opportunity to swing for the fences again, every five years sounds about right though, we have lost our Cranes already and the majority of the Snows are still to the North of us, oh well.  Good luck out there and remember:

An Empty Gun is a Happy Gun!

About Travis E

Just a Devils Lake outdoor junkie. This is my blog. Follow me for fishing reports, waypoints, and other information that can help make your day on the lake a success! Connect via Facebook, Instagram, or email. Read on for the latest fishing reports. I also offer limited guided day trips and up-to-date waypoints where I’ve recently caught fish. See you on the lake or in the field!
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